1938 U.S. Army training film # TF-35, Infantry Hasty Field Fortifications
The National Archives' version is 2 copies of the same film joined together? Maybe I'm mistaken... that version is the unedited file. The single film is the shorter version.
"TRAINING FILM: On locating and constructing foxholes, barbed wire entanglements and machine gun emplacements.
R.1: shows how to dig a foxhole under fire.
R.2: deals with "standing" foxholes and connecting trenches.
R.3: demonstrates how a "wiring party" constructs obstacles.
R.4: and 5 concern the proper emplacement of 30 and 50 cal. machine guns. Last reel shows how to construct miscellaneous infantry positions such as command posts and battalion aid stations."
National Archives Identifier: 36298
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September 8, 2013
The complete version is the 142 min cut, so...
...if only you watch the short 40-something minute version you won't get the full hasty-fortification-construction experience!
I'm guessing, however, that 140 mins for infantry to dig-in is not at all 'hasty' enough if the Germans are shelling and blitzkrieg-ing them with their customary Teutonic fury. Maybe the troops should've gone with the far 'hastier' 40 min version before attempting to tangle with the Wehrmacht.
Seriously, the GIs really did have to adapt and evolve their combat skills quite a lot between this 1938 film and final victory in 1945, as is somewhat obvious in all of these pre-war training films. The troops seem like they're out picnicking on a summer's day instead of waging war.
5 stars for historical value, but not worth multiple viewings at all!